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Turkey’s Erdogan Condemns ‘Coup Attempt’ In Armenia


Turkey - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a news conference following a cabinet meeting in Ankara, December 14, 2020.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned on Friday what he described as attempts to stage a military coup in Armenia.

“[Prime Minister] Nikol Pashinian is already in a situation where the people could achieve his resignation. But if they are talking about a direct overthrow of the government then our position is clear: we are against such steps,” he said, according to the Anadolu news agency.

“Turkey opposes any coups, including in Armenia,” added Erdogan, who himself was nearly overthrown by Turkish army units in 2016.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu made similar comments on Thursday.

“It is unacceptable when the military demands the resignation of an elected government,” he said. “So we condemn the coup attempt in Armenia.”

Erdogan and Cavusoglu clearly referred to an unprecedented statement by the Armenian military’s top bass that accused Pashinian of misrule and demanded his resignation. The statement also charged that Pashinian has put Armenia “on the brink of collapse” after the autumn war in Nagorno-Karabakh.

The prime minister rejected the demand as a coup attempt. By contrast, Armenian opposition forces voiced support for the military.

Turkish leaders have rarely commented on domestic political developments in Armenia in the past.

Ankara shut down the Turkish-Armenian border in 1993 and has refused to establish diplomatic relations with Yerevan out of solidarity with Azerbaijan.

During the six-week Karabakh war stopped by a Russian-brokered ceasefire on November 10, Ankara supported the Azerbaijani army with weapons and expert advice. It also reportedly recruited thousands of Syrian mercenaries and sent them to fight on the Azerbaijani side.

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